Story Time: Albert's Summer Journey

Some saw it as a drab life. Albert never really had anything going on, nothing worth talking about anyway. He didn’t mind it so much, it was peaceful, he had all the time in the world to relax, it just didn’t make for the best conversation when people tried to talk to him.

Occasionally he’d pick up some new hobbies to fill the void. He had a brief stint as a magician, he was fully invested in that too, even bought a fresh deck of cards. That didn’t really turn into anything, the interest drifted away fairly quickly. The same thing happened with palming. No one really used coins these days, so it felt like even more of a waste of time. At least cards carried a bit of cachet in the community, everyone knew something special was about to happen when a magician pulled out a deck of cards.

Yes, Albert often enjoyed simply sitting back and doing his own thing. He found this almost entirely predictable, as Albert was himself, and his own thing was exactly what he wanted to do. There was a beautiful monotony to it all. An occasional surprise might rear its head, sometimes a cloud passing overhead, sometimes the odd curious insect coming to see what Albert’s all about. That was enough for Albert.

Wind blasted through the remnants of Albert’s hair, and the sun was beating down on his fingertips. He stretched out in his deckchair and thought about going for a walk to the shops. Unfortunately for Albert he did need something to eat tonight, and the shops he was thinking about contained the desired food. Fortunately for Albert the sun blasted fingertips held a phone, and that phone held an app. A person with a bicycle could bring him food in just thirty minutes. Albert thought to himself and smiled. Thirty minutes, and he’d only have to climb to his feet once. The decision had been made, Albert sat back and waited for the bicycle to arrive.

A fist crunched very dramatically against the front of Albert’s house. Food at last! Albert checked the time, almost exactly thirty minutes had passed, he found that pleasing. Now on his feet, Albert made his way through the property. It felt very dark indoors, the sunlight settled in his eyes and made it difficult to pick out details inside. He pressed on with the journey. The tiles felt nice and cool on his feet, he took a few extra needless steps on them just to enjoy it a little more. They were good quality tiles. Albert didn’t know how much tiles cost, but he imagined these ones cost at least £5 each.

The walk continued. There was a rug, nice and soft, but he didn’t hang around to enjoy it like he did with the tiles. He’s not really sure why, it felt good. Really good in fact, but it just wasn’t the time for rugs, not in Albert’s mind. It was tile time, and what a time.

Albert finally made it to a door, it peeled back to reveal yet another room. He wasn’t yet at the front door, at the food. The trip was turning into quite the adventure really. This room was carpeted. A well cushioned carpet, again, like the rug, it felt good underfoot, but ultimately a carpet is just a large rug, and if it wasn’t rug time then it definitely wasn’t carpet time. The television lit up the corner of the room, a feature his sun filled eyes could make out, Albert was a bit disappointed in himself, it was a waste of electricity, and he didn’t even recognise the faces on it.

There it was, he could make out the front door. A sturdy door, traditional, wooden. Well treated with some kind of oil or something, it stood strongly against all weather. Changes in temperature could cause a little sticking, but it was nothing major. Albert was pleased with it, he employed someone to maintain it for him. Friend rates too, they were good friends, Albert and the guy who maintained his door. It worked out cheaper than buying the substance to protect the door himself. Albert looked that up once to check. The fist crunched again. Albert wasn’t too pleased about that if he was being honest. He wasn’t going to tell the delivery driver, but it hurt his ears, it was unexpected, pretty shocking. No, he’d be polite to the delivery cyclist, who was no doubt rushed off his feet, struggling to make ends meet. Albert stood with his hand on the latch, giving it a few extra seconds after the most recent knock just to ensure the person delivering the food didn’t feel bad about the extra unnecessary knock.

Albert couldn’t decide whether or not to apologise. Should he pretend he didn’t hear the first knock? It was a choice he’d have to make quickly. It didn’t hurt to be polite. Albert pulled open the front door, air rushed in, wafting the scent of food into his face. It smelled delicious. Albert apologised and smiled at the man, the man nodded and held out the food. He seemed appreciative, he seemed to be forgiving of the wait.

The door swung shut and Albert made his way back to one of the tiled rooms. The kitchen in this case. His vision was adapting to the light, he could make things out a little easier now. Lots of little details scattered about. He really appreciated the grouting around the tiles. It was good smooth grouting, you could run a finger along it with no concern. Like the tiles themselves, it just felt like quality. Albert wasn’t running his fingers along the grouting now though, that happened a few days ago, today he was holding food, he was searching for a plate. He liked to plate up his food, even if it arrived in solid boxes he could eat out of. This surprised people, which surprised Albert. He never claimed to be lazy, Albert loved his little jobs, he looked forward to cleaning up the plate later. He liked the taps, sometimes he’d imagine they were a waterfall, or perhaps something a little less grand like a small fountain. Whatever it happened to be that day, it was enjoyable.

Time had passed and food now sat on Albert’s plate. It was a blue plate, he liked how the food looked on it. It was a heavy plate too, a well made plate. People who got to hold Albert’s plate often remarked upon its weight. Albert clutched his plate and looked outside. The weather still looked good but eating out there was still quite a big decision. He’d have to deal with the insects he previously enjoyed visits from. He wouldn’t mind if they stayed away whilst he ate, he’d be more than happy to share the leftovers, he just didn’t want them crawling all over the food he was about to eat.

Albert gave it a little more thought. He was going for it. Through the full length vertical blinds, back outside, this time with his plate of food. He spoke to the insects, he asked them to stay away. He hoped they’d listen and plopped himself back in the chair.


  1. That was a nice little reward for scrolling to the bottom of the page, felt like I uncovered the secret and mysterious life of Albert, hehe.


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